Students sitting on SundialThe Odyssey Mentoring Program is designed to be flexible in order to fit a variety of needs among students and alumni. There is no specific time commitment required or prescribed manner for how mentoring must work in this program.

For those interested in longer-term mentoring relationships, here are a few key definitions and list of basic expectations to get you started:

DEFINITIONS

  • MENTORING (or MENTORSHIP) is a connection between two or more people who focus on the career and personal development of the mentee. 

  • MENTORS share their time and knowledge, offer ideas and advice based on real-world experience, listen carefully, ask open-ended questions and help the mentee define goals and the ways the mentor can assist with achieving them.

  • MENTEES are current College students or young alumni looking for guidance as they navigate their Columbia College journey, embark upon their career, consider a career change or explore graduate school. Mentees want to grow professionally, learn skills, explore career paths and expand their professional networks

WHY JOIN?

WHY BE A MENTOR?

  • Support a College student, a young alum or fellow alumni by sharing your insight, expertise and guidance.

  • Reconnect with the College on a personal level and reflect on your student experience and journey.

  • Enhance leadership skills as you advise and counsel others.

  • Connect with like-minded alumni and grow your personal network.

WHY BE A MENTEE?

  • Access the insight and advice of alumni who can provide guidance on your academic, personal and professional journey.

  • Develop leadership skills and deepen your appreciation of the core skills you need to advance to your personal and professional development.

  • Tap into a support source and build an awareness of opportunities that can enrich your educational experience.

  • Build a network of advisers and advocates.

EXPECTATIONS 

WHAT IS EXPECTED FROM A MENTOR?

  • Set clear expectations with your mentee for how and when you will contact each other.

  • Help your mentee identify and set goals. Track progress and make adjustments as needed.

  • Maintain and model professional behavior.

  • Offer feedback and/or define professional behavior where appropriate.

WHAT IS NOT EXPECTED FROM A MENTOR?

  • To offer jobs or internships.

  • To have all the answers.

  • To initiate all contact.

WHAT IS EXPECTED FROM A MENTEE?

  • Be prepared, professional and respectful.

  • Send thank-you notes and express gratitude to the mentor.

  • Exhibit responsibility, punctuality and courtesy.

  • Be receptive to feedback.

HOW TO CONNECT

  • Meet for coffee, breakfast or lunch.

  • Attend an on-campus event together, such as the mentoring kick-off or CCYA coffee chats.

  • Skype, Facetime, talk on the phone or write emails. Be approachable and accessible no matter the channel

  • Participate in activities related to common interests.

  • Take part in Columbia College Alumni Association mentoring activities.

  • Use the milestones in the Odyssey Mentoring Program system to stay on track toward formal goals.